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SPF-124: Novel Adaptation – Turning Books into Screenplays with Paul FitzSimons


This Week's Handout

SCREENWRITING TIPS PDF AND COURSE DISCOUNT

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Novelist, screenwriter and playwright Paul FitzSimons talks to James about his writing career so far, including adapting screenplays and producing independent films.

This week’s highlights include:

  • The winding path of Paul’s screenwriting and writing for television
  • Financing an independent film
  • Dealing with rejection from trad publishers
  • The skills necessary to transition from writing books to writing for the screen
  • Being creative while following screenwriting rules
  • Writing well-developed characters for the screen
  • Enjoying the interpretation of your words by others in the creative filmmaking team
  • The pitfalls of adapting a novel for the screen

Resources mentioned in this episode:

PATREON: Self Publishing Formula Podcast’s Patreon page

WORKSHEET AND COUPON: Paul has prepared a worksheet on screenwriting which you can access here.  This includes a coupon code for his ‘Screenwriting From Your Sofa’ course.

Our Ads for Authors course is still open for business here.

FREE LIVE SPF WEBINAR! on Monday 18th June – Mark explains how to use Facebook ads to build your list and boost book sales. Spots are limited but you can sign up for it here.

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SPF-123: BONUS EPISODE! Self Publishing Marketing Q & A – with Mark Dawson


This bonus episode of the podcast comprises a recording of the live Q & A session on book marketing that Mark hosted earlier this week.

Topics covered include:

  • Growing an email list
  • What to do about removed reviews on Amazon
  • Advice on SPF courses for authors
  • The power of novellas as a marketing tool
  • Strategies for using ads to trigger reader engagement

Resources mentioned in this episode:

ADS FOR AUTHORS COURSE: The Ads for Authors course is open again for a short enrollment window.

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SPF-122: The Self Publishing Retirement Windfall – with David Penny


Retiree David Penny talks about his return to writing after a thirty-five year hiatus and shares his strategy for making a mid-five-figures per year income from his very niche historical mysteries.

This week’s highlights include:

  • Getting back to writing after a decades long absence
  • Writing what we love to read
  • Being our own best audience
  • Making a good living writing and selling books
  • Focusing on one niche so that targeting becomes easier
  • The importance of a lookalike audience

Resources mentioned in this episode:

The SPF Foundation

PATREON: Self Publishing Formula Podcast’s Patreon page

ADS FOR AUTHORS COURSE: The Ads for Authors course is open again for a short enrollment window.

AUTHOR SUPPORT: The Alliance of Independent Authors

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SPF-121: How to Boost your Book Marketing with Pinterest – with Pip Reid


Pip Reid shares how she uses Pinterest to drive traffic to her website and increase her book sales.

This week’s highlights include:

  • The reasons Pip chose to investigate Pinterest
  • Pip’s beginnings as an author and her path to where she is now
  • The compelling difference between Pinterest and other social media platforms (hint: It has to do with longevity)
  • The unique linking abilities on Pinterest
  • Targeting your specific audience, whether that’s fiction or non-fiction
  • The traffic that comes to Pip’s website from Pinterest
  • Why Pinterest is a good fit for children’s picture book authors
  • Using layered elements from illustrations you get designed
  • News about the Pinterest module added to Ads for Authors
  • How Pinterest is now like the early days of Facebook and Instagram

Resources mentioned in this episode:

The SPF Foundation

PATREON: Self Publishing Formula Podcast’s Patreon page

FREE BOOK: Click here to get Pip’s free book about Pinterest for authors.

GDPR EPISODE: SPF Episode 117 about GDPR is proving to be very popular. Find it here if you haven’t listened yet.

WEBINAR: Click here to get access to Stuart Bache’s webinar about book cover design

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SPF-120: Masterclass: Facebook Changes and What They Mean for Authors – with Mark Dawson


Mark and James discuss up-to-the-minute news concerning the Facebook advertising platform and how recent changes affect authors.

This week’s highlights include:

  • On the end of the Power Editor
  • On the reduced reach of Facebook posts
  • Ways to adapt to these changes including using groups, not pages
  • Engagement campaigns rather than lead generation
  • How testing older strategies once again sometimes works
  • Reasons not to panic about Facebook ads
  • Updated info about GDPR and lead gen ads
  • Announcement about the launch date for the next Ads for Authors enrollment period
  • Mark’s command of his robot vacuum cleaner army using Alexa

Resources mentioned in this episode:

The SPF Foundation

PATREON: Self Publishing Formula Podcast’s Patreon page

SPF RESOURCES: The GPDR information sheets SPF has put together.

COOKIE BAR AND PRIVACY POLICY: SPF community member Kevin Partner has generously put together a video for WordPress website owners explaining how to add a Cookie bar and privacy policy to their websites, all while raising money for SPF friend Tommy Donbavand in his fight against cancer. More info here in the pinned post at the top of the news feed.

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SPF-119: First Steps in Self Publishing – with 2018 SPF Foundation Winners


This week we get to chat to the first three recipients of Self-Publishing Formula’s Foundation scholarships who discuss their writing, book marketing and future career hopes.

This week’s highlights include:

  • Laura Fife on taking her own advice about writing more
  • R.R. Virdi on connecting with readers and converting them to book buyers
  • Diana Duncan on leaving the trad publishing world and going indie
  • Also, James meets his first Funko Pop character

Resources mentioned in this episode:

The SPF Foundation

PATREON: Self Publishing Formula Podcast’s Patreon page

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SPF-118: Five Types of Bad Review and What To Do About Them – with Molly McCord


This Week's Handout

TIPS ON HANDLING BAD REVIEWS PDF

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Non-fiction author Molly McCord shares her breakdown of the types of bad reviews authors can receive and how to deal with them.

This week’s highlights include:

  • Differentiating between a bad opinion and someone who has valuable feedback
  • The five different types of negative reviews
  • Tips for dealing with each type of review
  • Understanding your rights as an author and when to contest a review
  • The importance of self-management when dealing with bad reviews
  • Relying on the author community and friends we trust for objective opinions

Resources mentioned in this episode:

PATREON: Self Publishing Formula Podcast’s Patreon page

WORKSHEET: Molly has prepared a worksheet about reviews which you can get here.

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SPF-117: GDPR – What All Authors Need to Know – with Gemma Gibbs


With changes coming on May 25, 2018 to the European Union’s laws on data protection, Team SPF talk to lawyer Gemma Gibbs and gets advice for how authors can ensure compliance with these new regulations.

This week’s highlights include:

  • The purpose of the GDPR
  • Changes authors will have to make to their mailing lists to be compliant with GDPR
  • Should you now ask permission from your list to email them?
  • Additional wording for a landing page to keep authors compliant with GDPR
  • How issues can be raised for those who are in breach of the GDPR
  • Who is affected by this new legislation
  • Examples of landing page language; what is compliant and what isn’t
  • A summary of 4 GDPR best practices
  • Amending your privacy policy to be in line with GDPR

Resources mentioned in this episode:

PATREON: Self Publishing Formula Podcast’s Patreon page

SPF RESOURCES: The GPDR information sheets SPF has put together.

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SPF-116: Publishing 3.0 – with Jasper Joffe


Independent author and publisher Jasper Joffe talks about the success his publishing house has had using a model very different to the traditional one.

This week’s highlights include:

  • Jasper’s publishing business model – not trad and not quite self-pub
  • Predictions about adjustment in trad publishing models
  • How Jasper’s publishing model works financially
  • Jasper’s commitment to ongoing learning about book advertising
  • The importance of attention to detail with every book
  • On managing ads for multiple authors
  • Working with freelancers who form the company’s workforce
  • Tips for the submission process for authors for Joffe Books

Resources mentioned in this episode:

PATREON: Self Publishing Formula Podcast’s Patreon page

PUBLISHER: JoffeBooks.com

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SPF-115: Simplifying Data for Authors – with John P. Logsdon


This Week's Offer

ReaderLinks Discount

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John Logsdon and Ben Zackheim chat with James about the need they saw for an all-in-one tool to organize and simplify an author’s business.

This week’s highlights include:

  • How ReaderLinks was started as a way to make John’s author life simpler
  • Addressing the key pain points authors have when organizing multiple books over multiple vendors
  • Simplifying dealing with ARC teams
  • Using ReaderLinks to measure ROI from all marketing and advertising efforts
  • Added features like a daily journal to track marketing and promotion activity

Resources mentioned in this episode:

PATREON: Self Publishing Formula Podcast’s Patreon page

COUPON: Click here to claim your ReaderLinks coupon and save

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SPF-114: Getting Twitter to Fly for Authors – with Ian Sutherland


THIS WEEK'S OFFER

Author Sidekick Discount

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Ian Sutherland returns to the podcast to share what’s working and what isn’t for authors on Twitter, and how to maximize your reach on the social media platform.

This week’s highlights include:

  • What’s not working with Twitter ads
  • What has changed since Ian’s last visit to the podcast
  • Why Twitter has banned automated tweets
  • Does Twitter still work for authors?
  • The number one thing you can do to attract more followers
  • Examples of what is working on Twitter
  • Tips for automating your Tweets and building your author brand

Resources mentioned in this episode:

PATREON: Self Publishing Formula Podcast’s Patreon page

AUTHOR PLATFORM SIDEKICK SAVING: Click here to receive 15% saving on Ian’s Author Platform Sidekick

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SPF-113: Great Website Design for Authors – with Dave Stansbie


This Week's Offer

FREE Website Health Check

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Web designer to bands like Nine Inch Nails, Pink Floyd and David Gilmour, and authors like Robert Galbraith (JK Rowling) and Mark Dawson, Dave Stansbie discusses the important elements of an author site, and how to work with a designer.

This week’s highlights include:

  • The three steps that go into web design
  • The importance of being clear about the objectives for your website
  • Working collaboratively with a web designer
  • DIY web site maintenance as well as support for site changes
  • The importance of form and function for a web site
  • The two most important functions of an author website
  • News about the SPF get-together at the upcoming London Book Fair

Resources mentioned in this episode:

PATREON: Self Publishing Formula Podcast’s Patreon page

DAVE STANSBIE’S WEBSITE: TheCreativeCorporation.com

MARK’S AUTHOR WEBSITE: Here’s the site that Dave and The Creative Corporation recently designed for Mark’s author brand

WEBSITE HEALTHCHECK: Sign up for a chance to win a diagnosis on your author website from Dave

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SPF-112: Turning Personal Stories into Marketable Books – with Owen Zupp


James talks to fellow aviation fan, and pilot, Owen Zupp about how and why he’s turning his father’s aeronautic exploits into popular non-fiction books.

This week’s highlights include:

  • On self-publishing manuals for the airline industry
  • Building an author brand with magazine articles
  • Switching from trad to self publishing after one book
  • On the parallels between fiction and biography
  • Replacing day job income with writing royalties
  • Future book ideas, including another biography, this time about Owen’s mother’s WWII experiences

Resources mentioned in this episode:

PATREON: Self Publishing Formula Podcast’s Patreon page

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SPF-111: BookLab – with David F. Berens


This Week's Handout

BookLab Feedback Summary PDF

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In this first episode of the BookLab, author David Berens gets professional feedback on his cover, book blurb and Look Inside content from industry experts (and SPF friends) cover designer Stuart Bache, copywriter Bryan Cohen, and editor Jenny Parrott.

This week’s highlights include:

  • Suggestions from cover designer Stuart Bache about font, colour, author name placement and prominence
  • Tips from Bryan Cohen about the book blurb, including focusing on the main genre first.
  • Also the importance of looking at the book’s plot and central conflict for a catchy blurb
  • Editorial suggestions from Jenny Parrot about the importance of the opening scene of a book
  • Remembering to populate your author bio on Amazon in the different territories (UK, US, etc.)

Resources mentioned in this episode:

FREE DOWNLOAD: Here’s the companion PDF of this episode

PATREON: Self Publishing Formula Podcast’s Patreon page

TRAINING: SPF 101 Course enrollment window extended to March 28. Learn more.

COVER DESIGN TRAINING: Don’t forget the cover design training course with Stuart Bache is still available here.

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SPF-110: How I Quit the 9 to 5 to Write (And Never Looked Back) – with Ernest Dempsey


Thriller author Ernest Dempsey shares his road to indie author success, including some of the bumps along the way.

This week’s highlights include:

  • Once the first novel is done it gets easier from there
  • Encouragement from Ernest’s teachers
  • Inspiration from a local landmark
  • Making time to write
  • Mistakes to avoid when self-publishing
  • If you don’t do it right the first time, try again!
  • Success from balancing writing and marketing

Resources mentioned in this episode:

PATREON: Self Publishing Formula Podcast’s Patreon page

SPF TRAINING: The Self-Publishing Formula’s 101 Course

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SPF-109: From Zero to Hero – with first time author Maria Luis


James talks to NOLA romance writer Maria Luis who quit her marketing job and now makes three times her previous salary via her books, thanks in part to the Self Publishing Formula courses.

This week’s highlights include:

  • The details on Maria’s strategic plan to leave her day job and make a living writing
  • The importance of being authentic with our readers
  • The benefits of an Advanced Reader team
  • Maria’s first launch strategy – what worked and what she’d do differently
  • Maria’s goal to be a ‘one click’ author; what that is and how she’s achieved that

Resources mentioned in this episode:

PATREON: Self Publishing Formula Podcast’s Patreon page

ONLINE AUTHOR COURSE: Self Publishing Formula 101 course – open for enrollment now

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SPF-108: How To Engage Your Readers with Facebook Live – with Cecelia Mecca


This Week's Handout

Facebook Live – Prep Sheet

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Returning guest, Cecelia Mecca, talks to James about using Facebook Live broadcasts, with both groups and pages, to increase engagement with readers.

This week’s highlights include:

  • Mark discusses his move into KU and the experience he’s had
  • An announcement about the next enrollment period for the SPF 101 course
  • Dealing with technological jitters re: being on camera for Facebook Lives
  • Cecelia’s targets for how many Lives she does each week and why
  • Equipment and apps to assist with Facebook Live
  • An addition to the SPF 101 curriculum – a course by Cecelia about FB Live
  • Is this FB Live strategy have an influence on Cecelia’s book sales?

Resources mentioned in this episode:

PATREON: Self Publishing Formula Podcast’s Patreon page

FREE PDF: Celia’s useful FB Live Prep Sheet

FREE BOOK: Pinterest for Authors

 

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SPF-107: The Entrepreneurial Mindset -with Chris Ducker


James talks to serial entrepreneur Chris Ducker about the Rise of the Youpreneur and why self-published authors fit this business model perfectly.

This week’s highlights include:

  • Building a business around yourself
  • Why Chris chose to self-publish Rise of the Youpreneur
  • The economic longevity of being a Youpreneur
  • Why self-published authors are the ideal Youpreneurs
  • Chris’s marketing strategy for his new book

Resources mentioned in this episode:

CHRIS DUCKER’S WEBSITE

BOOK: Rise of the Youpreneur

PATREON: Self Publishing Formula Podcast’s Patreon page

COURSE: Book cover design course with Mark’s cover designer, Stuart Bache

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SPF-106: Masterclass: How To Get Reviews – with Mark Dawson


This Week's Handout

How To Get Reviews – Tip Sheet

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Mark and James discuss how even beginning authors can gather reviews for their books, and why this matters.

This week’s highlights include:

  • The chicken and egg problem for new writers trying to get book reviews
  • How to avoid Amazon removing your reviews
  • The benefits of an Advanced Reader team
  • Getting your readers enrolled in your success, which helps with getting reviews
  • Paid options and other tools and tips for gathering reviews

Resources mentioned in this episode:

PATREON: Self Publishing Formula Podcast’s Patreon page

SPF RESOURCES: The companion PDF to this episode

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SPF-105: Increase Your Global Reach – with Kobo’s Christine Munroe


Kobo’s Senior Manager for Author performance, Christine Munroe, talks to James about the advantages of reaching world markets with Kobo that other retailers do not reach.

This week’s highlights include:

  • On Kobo’s background and beginnings
  • The idea of buying ebooks in a brick and mortar bookstore
  • The reality that we’re still in a growth phase for ebooks and indie publishing
  • The world markets where Kobo dominates over Amazon
  • The ease and simplicity of listing a book at Kobo
  • Merchandising opportunities available to Kobo authors

Resources mentioned in this episode:

PATREON: Self Publishing Formula Podcast’s Patreon page

NEW COURSE: Book Cover Design with Stuart Bache $100 savings until 16 Feb 2018

ENTER FOR A CHANCE TO WIN: The KOBO Aura H2O the waterproof e-reader

KOBO WRITING LIFE: The Kobo website for authors

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